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date: 10 April 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Electronic reading has changed dramatically over the last three decades, and so too has electronic literature. Electronic literature is born-digital, with computational aesthetics that are essential to its poetics and the experience of reading it. Ten years ago, “electronic literature” was largely limited to screens and interaction with their interfaces. Today, a cell phone, virtual-reality headgear, or even a public square works just as well as an environment for reading electronic literature. This essay examines electronic reading by way of electronic literature, through consideration of three recent works of electronic literature—Jacob Garde and Aaron Reed’s The Icebound Concordance, J. R. Carpenter’s The Gathering Cloud, and José Aburto’s “Paper Alive” and “Blot Alive”—that each promote recognition of how reading is no longer the sole activity of the human and how electronic reading involves a participatory network of actors and media forms.

Keywords: electronic literature, augmented reality, transmedia, The Icebound Concordance, The Gathering Cloud, José Aburto, J. R. Carpenter, Jacob Garbe, Aaron Reed

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